HARVARD SQUARE COMMENTARY

November 3, 2008
From the Editor

John Turner


Since I write this on the eve of the national election, I don't suppose there's much sense in trying to talk about anything else.

I have no crystal ball to tell me how the election will go. If I were entering an office pool to predict the electoral vote outcome, I would bet on Obama winning 346 to 192. And I would guess that Obama will get about 52% of the popular vote. But those numbers are no better than anyone else's.

If there's to be a big surprise, I suspect it will come from the total number of votes. I think that figure will be greater than even the highest expectations.

Of all the things I would most love, it would be for Georgia to go for Obama, and for Saxby Chambliss to lose his Senate race. I don't think there's much chance of either happening, but what's the harm in dreaming?

The thing we still don't know, after all the debates, and editorials, and columns, and interviews, is the mind of the American people. What do they think? Do they think at all? Do they have a vision of good government? And, if they do, what is it?

I suspect that growing numbers are perceiving that the national government of the past decades has disgraced us. It has not been what we have needed. It has spun out of intelligent control because an insufficient number of citizens have been paying attention to it. There's been far too much of the attitude, "Oh, well. There's nothing we can do."

If Obama wins as expected, I would like to see Lindsey Graham interviewed on the outcome. But I suspect he will be nowhere to be found. I regard him as the most obnoxious member of the political class, with Joe Lieberman running a fairly close second. But, on reflection, I guess it's not good to gloat. So maybe it would be best for them, along with Karl Rove, to keep out of sight.

In any case, next week we'll have a new political landscape to speculate about. So we can all look forward to that as 2008 winds down.


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